Parents, opposition groups protest CPS closings - DC News FOX 5 DC WTTG

Parents, opposition groups protest CPS closings

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CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) -

Warnings of civil disobedience from opposition groups surfaced less than 24 hours after Chicago Public Schools announced the closure of 54 neighborhood schools.

"I think it's going to be more intense. I think there's a real anger out there in the community and people are going to do whatever it takes to stop these school closings… I think people are going to get arrested, I think there's talk of people trying to occupy their schools, who knows, we're going to do whatever it takes," said Erica Clark, an organizer for Parents for Teachers.

At the peak of Friday night's rush hour, Parents for Teachers, organized three simultaneous demonstrations, including one on the Madison Street overpass near the Kennedy and another at City Hall.

"We're out here for two reasons. First of all, we're trying to let people in the city here who might think they're not directly affected by these school closings, we want them to know that this affects us all… We want to see people across the city stand up, contact their elected officials and say this is wrong, this has to stop," said Clark.

In the meantime, Clark tells Fox 32's Tisha Lewis the group is just one of several preparing for Wednesday's big rally at Daley Plaza.

Friday night they handed out fliers after a morning of protests across the city.

"What's going to happen to my child when he comes to school next year and knows no one, he's going to shut down," said Yolanda Harris.

"Why do we have these TIFF funds in the city that can go to corporations and can go to businesses but they can't be going to schools," said Cassandre Creswell.

The opposition says the CPS closures target the most vulnerable students at schools starved of resources. The district disputes those accusations.

CPS says many of the students effected will ultimately attend higher performing schools and will have access to more resources. On Friday, many people downtown received a flier urging them to call the mayor and elected officials here and in Springfield.

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